Linkbuilding has to be one of my favorite aspects of SEO. All too often people use the analogy of linkbuilding being a popularity contest. As someone who views linkbuilding in a somewhat different light – and as someone who was considered by only his parents as ‘cool’ – I think it’s time to put that analogy to bed. Yes, being the sexy-fun brand will undoubtedly drive links for your site. But in my opinion, it’s the quality of the information on the page that will not only help you succeed in proactively acquiring links, but will also inspire others to link to your page. Or to return to the analogy, the cool kid might start out with the lead, but it’s the smart kid (see nerd) who ends up winning in the long run.
When people learn I’ve recently written a book called Optimize they usually ask what it’s about. I say it’s about optimizing customer discovery and engagement with content. The response I usually get is something like, “Oh, cool. I thought it was about SEO.”
Well, in a way optimizing content and customer experiences is SEO. That’s because what most of the better SEOs practice today is really more about the promise of marketing: attracting, engaging and inspiring customers to buy.
Whether it’s Google, Social Networks, Online News Media, Digital Assets or any other channel/format for content – best practices optimization is in effect for smart companies that want an advantage.
One of the classic scenarios for the intersection of web design/development and search engine optimization is when companies decide to update their website’s design and content management system. Businesses that expect new revenue and continued visibility to various audiences through search need to manage their web site assets for more than just ease of back-end maintenance and customer user experience.
Hopefully the situation doesn’t come to light like this:
A website manager sends an email on Friday saying, “We’re launching a new website on Monday, can you take a look at it to make sure our site optimization is ok?”.
I’m headed to (hopefully) sunny San Diego today for the annual Online Marketing Summit conference where I’ll get to present on one of my favorite topics: Optimization. Of course, if you read Online Marketing Blog very often, you’ll know my definition of optimization is a bit different than traditional SEO. My post last Thursday “Are You Optimized?” touched on this.
The competition for attendance during the breakout sessions at OMS is really tough during the time slot I’m scheduled for. SAP, Wider Funnel and SAP are all presenting at the same time as I’m giving the all new “Optimize THIS: Integrating Social, SEO & Content presentation”. This post is a bit of a preview on the presentation so if you’re at OMS this week, make sure you check it out.
Who’s Using Google+?
The launch of Google+ in 2011 has put Google in the social networking boxing ring. When it comes to user statistics some of them may surprise you. This infographic by Flowtown shares some interesting information about the increasingly popular social media site.
- 63% of users are male
- Only 17% of users are considered active
- 61% of top 100 brands have a page on Google+
Online Marketing Tips & Tricks
“10 Brand-Building Steps For Beginners” For many companies 2012 marks the year that they will begin implementing a social media strategy. This article provides 10 easy steps for those who have not yet many the plunge into social marketing. Via Fast Company.
From Marketing to PR, digital assets are an essential part of the content used to tell stories and communicate brand messages. For publishers and public relations professionals, optimizing the images used in news stories and press releases can have an important impact on visibility in search engines. Images not only add flavor to news content, but they are also an opportunity to extend the reach of your message through image specific search.
Images are essential for both search and social media marketing with growing popularity as a social media asset. Long time image hosting and social network Flickr hosts well over 50 billion images and social media image sharing services like Instagram and Pintrest have exploded in popularity:
Thousands if not tens of thousands of new companies are formed every month in the U.S. and one of the most common problems to be solved relates to creating awareness, interest and motivation to buy. Is buying Google AdWords, throwing up a blog and a Facebook Fan page the answer? What about sending out Tweets, press releases and investing in SEO? If your start-up is executing content marketing tactics without first hand insight into the market and target customers, those tactics are a crapshoot. The irony is that most start-ups don’t have a lot of money to waste on marketing and advertising. But they do, every day. And so do many of the people reading this blog post.
Never fear, that’s why Optimize is here.
Where Does SEO & Social Media Optimization Fit Within Your Company? Hint: It’s Not All About Marketing #optimizeLee Odden on Dec 5th, 2011 Content Marketing, Online Marketing, Online PR, Optimize Book, Social Media
When most people think of search engine optimization for a company, it’s usually as a marketing function. That makes sense since SEO is such a low-cost, high impact and measurable method of attracting new customers and revenue. However, I think looking at SEO and optimizing social media solely as a marketing function is like looking only at the eyeball of your favorite portait. Take a step back and you’ll see a bigger, more interesting picture.
Think Outside the Marketing Search Box. Companies publish a variety of content besides products and services but usually rely only on people’s familiarity with the company website to find that information. Customers, employees, partners, job seekers, news media, industry analysts and investors need a variety of information from those companies and with over 11 billion queries handled every month by Google, search is a prime channel for discovery. So is social. Facebook has over 800 million members, Twitter has over 200 million and LinkedIn over 100 million. If content has a purpose and an intended audience, why not optimize for findability and shareability?
As SES Chicago reaches its final sessions the audience is still alert and ready to learn at TopRank CEO Lee Odden’s afternoon presentation on “Content Marketing & Optimization.” According to Google’s Eric Schmidt, every 2 days we create as much information as we did from the dawn of time to the year 2003. With so much information being shared what can we do as marketers to make our content easy to spot and easy to consume?
Can Customers Find Your Content?
Content creation is so much more than marketing, it is a way of engaging and enticing potential customers to take action. Optimized content can make sure that customers interact with your brand. There are many types of content that companies publish and many different audiences that a company should interact with. Content creation is one of the most effective form of online marketing, it also happens to be the most difficult.
The agency (TopRank Online Marketing) that I started with Susan Misukanis celebrated it’s 10th Birthday this year and in all my time as an Internet Marketer, no other combination of marketing tactics has yielded results like Search Engine Optimization and Content. Over the past 5 years Social Media has entered the mix as an even more powerful amplifier to the effect of optimized content.
But there’s a key problem with how content marketing is implemented by many SEO-focused agencies and practitioners. Creation of “content” has escalated to amazing levels but there is a lot of that content fails to achieve the desired objective. In the midst of keywords, links, rankings and search algorithms there are several important pieces missing.
Continuing our theme this week of Content Marketing, this post digs into some of the changes that have happened with search engines (but mostly Google) and how understanding both the diversity of search results and content formats can help internet marketers gain a competitive advantage with content optimization.
There’s nothing static about Internet Marketing, but the one constant we can all count on is the persistent effort by search engines to improve search quality and user experience. Such continuous improvements can affect how content is discovered, indexed and sorted in search results as well as what external signals are considered to determine authority.
The growing Global Economy has significantly increased the number of companies seeking search marketing strategies to connect with target audiences all over the world. Many clients we work with at TopRank Online Marketing are either already global organizations or aspiring to deliver products and services in different countries. As a result, we routinely field questions as clients begin their journey into International Search.
Many companies don’t know where to start with International SEO, so here are 5 basic and tactical SEO considerations for companies looking at expanding into International Search:
1. Domain Name
3 common domain setups include Country-specific, Subdomain and Subfolder.
Whenever possible, a country-specific domain name is preferred. i.e. companyname.co.uk
The country-specific domain is a strong signal to the search engine and may provide better visibility for country-specific searches.